Wow Wee!

Time goes so fast, I can’t believe I haven’t updated my blog in a while. Some iris from last week

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I totally love iris

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I love watching them grow and unfurl their petals

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To show us their beautiful colors

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And if you look closely, they actually sparkle

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And then there are poppies

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Another flower I absolutely love. The petals are so soft and flimsy, and their centers are so cool

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And then there’s my Mom’s kitty, who is shedding enough fur for another whole cat right now. Pet her and your hand is full of fur

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She’s still a little sweety, and it’s still very hard to capture a good photo of her!

Chanticleer Gardens

The other day I received the May 2008 Horticulture magazine and saw on pages 47-51 that Chanticleer Garden in Wayne, PA won The Award for Garden Excellence in 2007. I visited there in April 2005, before I was really into taking photos of everything, even though the people I was with wouldn’t believe that because I still have tons of photos from the place. But I don’t have any photos of the very cool old house or the signs. So here’s a bit of what I do have.

Ah, green grass.

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Minder Ruin, where Minder House once stood – a second home on the property.

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Terraces leading up to Minder Ruin.

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These huge acorns are located within the ruin.

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There’s nothing like spring trees and flowers in blossom. . .

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I love this cool stone shed.

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And the water garden.

We went into the woods (you know me, I have to go into the woods) and saw Jack in the Pulpit
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Among other flowers:
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And trees growing side by side:
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And hellebores, one of my favorite springtime plants:
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And flowering shrubs:

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If you ever make it to the eastern end of PA, I recommend visiting Chanticleer Garden!

Garden Store Opens!

Yay! One of our favorite garden stores is open for spring again!! It’s the one that has the model trains that I posted about here, and they close after Christmas and open March 1st. We expected to see flowers today, but they weren’t out yet. But they have lots of pretty gloves:

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The gloves on the left are new (to me) and VERY comfortable. They’re expensive, but I may just have to have a pair of these! They’re a brand called Womanswork. They kind of look like my gym gloves except they have fingertips. I like the pretty colors of mud gloves they have this year, too!

After I took this photo my Mom said “Do you have to photograph everything?” My response, of course, was “YES!” I mean after all, I have a blog and I *have* to have photos, and I *like* taking photos. I told her to ignore the woman with the camera!

They had some really pretty pots!

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Hey, what’s with that freakin’ plastic bag junking up my photo! I didn’t notice that until now, else I would have *moved* it!

They had some flowering bromeliads in the houseplant section (we had to satisfy our need to see plants by going into the houseplants section):

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And I love looking at all of the seed packages (even though I don’t buy these seeds):

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I can’t *wait* to see the forced bulbs, lilies, and primroses, etc.!!

I Interrupt This Program. . .

I know I owe you a continuation of the Allegany State Park post, and I will do it, I promise! My finger got banged a few times while working today, so I can’t get carried away with posting today.

But I just have to show you this one thing! Yesterday while I was helping my Mom put her gardens to bed (cutting down hostas) a daddy long legs came towards me. I’m thinking, no biggie, but you’re there so let me take a macro of you. Oh my!! This guy (or gal) is way tooooo cool, I never knew! Check this out:

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He/she looks like an Eastern Daddy Long Legs (Leiobunum spp.). If you’re sitting there going, yup, no big deal, what’s she raving over, well, I’ve never really looked closely at a Daddy Long Legs before, have you?

Audubon says they’re not a spider. Check out the details of this guy/gal in your favorite insect guide if you want to know more of his cool features (I would type it all here for you, but the finger deal, you know).

And here’s the same photo not so close.

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Here it looks like he’s using his second pair of legs as antennas because I was so close.

Sonnenberg Gardens

Yesterday we went to Sonnenberg Gardens in Canandaigua. For my long time readers, you may remember my Sonnenberg Gardens post from last year, wherein I said it is now a NY State Park, and they’re working to fix it up, slow but sure, after years of it having gone downhill.

One of the first things we saw was a turtle basking in the sunshine on a rock. Did a get a photo before he knew I was interested in him? No.

The next thing we spotted were the ducks while we were eating lunch. They were bathing themselves like mad, and then settled down for a nice long afternoon siesta.

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It looks like this one was naughty because it is separated from the rest sleeping on a hard rock instead of the relatively soft grass.

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After we were done eating, I saw this dragonfly.

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Then we saw these frogs, who thought they were hiding from us. It took me a while to find them but I knew they were there somewhere.

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We then went to the trial gardens and saw these gorgeous cosmos:

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These vivid morning glories were along the fences:

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There are signs like these now. Even though the sky looks evil in this picture, it was perfect day.

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We went inside the conservatory:

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And one of the first things we saw, besides the plants, are the fish, which made me think of Mary right away! This is the first place we noticed the water level was half of what it normally is, and the fountains and waterfalls all over the gardens were shut off.

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Water for the City of Canandaigua comes from Canandaigua Lake, and since we haven’t had much rain this summer, maybe there is a water restriction there. I don’t know for sure.

In the cactus part we saw this cactus with some really cool flowers:

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I’m skipping ahead now, to the part that we noticed they have been working on. They’ve cleaned up this statue and the area around her and in front of her,

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And these guys in front of the woman statue:

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You can see on the end of the “bench” how black these used to be:

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The floor is totally gorgeous:

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And they’re laying a new marble walk in front of the statue and along the side going towards the house.

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I turned around and saw they’ve cleaned up the steps to the house, and saw the pile of marble waiting to be laid down:

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Next we went to the rose garden. I love the color of this rose called ‘Singing in the Rain’

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Here’s part of the aviary complex where they used to keep 891 birds representing 246 species. This particular building is meant to look like a small castle.

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This is the first time we’ve been able to go into the ice house:

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Where we saw carriages:

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Imagine being socked into this pony cart. Maybe I’ll explain how this pony cart works in another post.

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Here’s part of the carriage house, where the carriages used to be stored,

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Here are the leaves of the Fern Leaf Beech (Fagus salvatica ‘Asplenifolia’). I love this tree. But there aren’t too many trees I don’t love.

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And here’s the bipinnately compound leaf of the Kentucky Coffee Tree (Gymnocladus dioicus). My Mom is holding the leaf in the middle so I could photograph it:

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I remember using this leaf in my plant collection for one of my classes and I had a hard time fitting it all onto a standard sized piece of mounting paper.

The trees still have issues at Sonnenberg, but I found out they’re working on them. Yay! I hope it’s not to late to save some of the old beauties there.

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My Mom standing next to a Purple Beech (Fagus sylvatica ‘purpurea’) so you can see just how huge the trunk is!

Cornell Plantations, Ithaca

Yesterday Mom and I went to Ithaca to spend the day at the Robison-York Herb Garden at Cornell Plantations. Before we arrived, we stopped at GreenStar Cooperative Market for our picnic lunch (701 W. Buffalo St.).

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One of the things we bought for lunch was Tabouli. I’ve never had this before, and it was wonderful! I want to find this recipe so I can make it at home. I know, to non-vegetarian people, this probably looks icky, but to me, it looks like and was a bowl full of yummy energy:

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Does anyone have a favorite Tabouli recipe they want to share with me?

We also had coleslaw and a tofu salad sandwich. All very filling. Sorry no pics of those!

When we arrived at the Herb Garden first thing we noticed was scaffolding all around the building. The roof is being repaired, and they took out all of the plants around the building so they wouldn’t get damaged.

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With all of the plants gone from around the building, I noticed this sign on the building:

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The entrance to the gardens was as gorgeous as it ever is.

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Each entrance container had a pineapple growing in it! Pineapple is the symbol for “welcome,” so that was really cool!

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They have orchid lilies in containers – what a cool idea this is!

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I think I showed you this Big Leaf Magnolia (Magnolia macrophylla) with the cool seed head last year here (it had a bird’s nest in it):

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There were pollinators of many types all over everything there:

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Including huge bees:

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Speaking of bees, I found one hanging out on the hand I had my camera in, and it is a good thing I had the camera strap around my wrist, because it would have been flung into the next county! I flung that stinging thing off my hand so fast I’m sure it is still dizzy. Even my Mom noticed that all manner of insects like to land on me. I know they’re supposed to be minding their own business, but they make me part of their business. What am I releasing pheromones, or do I have pollen? Hmmmm. . .

This beautiful butterfly stayed open long enough for me to capture it – yay!

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And I spied an ant hauling a huge (for it) insect:

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The gardens were so gorgeous this year:

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The sundial on the millstone was two hours off, but that’s okay. It’s still very cool!

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I love this unfurling leaf:

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Which when totally unfurled will look like this:

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We visited the gift shop (of course) because they usually have at least one book that is new to me. And I wasn’t disappointed this year! I found ‘Ferns of the Vicinity of New York‘ by John Kunkel Small

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Field Guide to the Grasses, Sedges and Rushes of the United States‘ by Edward Knobel and

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Guide to the Plant Communities of the Central Finger Lakes Region‘ by Mohler, Marks & Gardescu

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After we had our fill of the gardens, we went to Aladdin’s Natural Eatery for dinner (100 Dryden Rd.).

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We’ve been going to Aladdin’s for years in Rochester, and now they have a restaurant in both Ithaca and Syracuse. Yay!! We ate outside in the perfect weather.

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Mmmm, they have the best lentil soup and garden salad! They also have great hummus, but I wasn’t hungry enough for hummus after the big lunch we had.

Now this is what weekends are all about!

In Bloom This Week, in part

So I was trying to use up my camera battery so I can recharge it in time for another couple of trips, and I got overly anxious with it and used it all up before I was done with it! So here’s a partial look at what’s in bloom this week.

Gazania – I love the colors in this and I think it is so cool:

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It’s so cool in fact, that it has not only rusty orange blossoms, but yellow blossoms on the same plant, hmmmm:

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Okay, now Mom puts her amaryllis out in the garden so the leaves can grow and feed the bulb, it isn’t *supposed* to blossom this time of year, but here is one of them, in it’s full bloom:

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It will be interesting to see what happens to this bulb in the winter.

Well, this next thing isn’t in bloom, but I love the colors of coleus:

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And this delphinium is the prettiest shade of light purple:

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I’m trying to get braver with insects, even the stinging ones (I won’t mention the squeal I let out when a hornet landed on my chest – ahem, you know where – my Mom LOL and asked me if I was trying out for the opera).

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I love these yellow lilies:

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And here’s another clematis vine in blossom:

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So Mom asked me to get some stones for her to put on the wire mesh columns she’s started to put around her baby plants because the deer are eating everything this year (it seems that way) the freakin’ piggies. And I spied the pile of stones my Dad and I piled up last year in anticipation of continuing a stone path this year, and I broke down. What the heck, over a pile of rock. Everyone has told me it is those things you so don’t expect that get right to you.

Okay, back to happy stuff – here’s little Miss Kitty who was being her cute little self again yesterday, but I’m still not able to get close photos because she’s still waaaay too nosey!

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Last Week’s (and some of this week’s) Plants in Bloom

Remember last week I forgot my camera when I went to my Mom’s house, but I used her camera, and finally brought the photos home. Okay, so last week the Quince flowers were open:

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And the rhododendrons were beautiful (the heat killed the blossoms way too fast this year):

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And the azaleas (same deal with the blossoms and the heat):

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And gaznia, which the woodchucks promptly ate (grrrr):

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And Solomon’s Seal (I wanted a macro of these, but I didn’t use Mom’s camera right to get a good macro):

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And this week, I started taking photos and then it started raining so I didn’t get to finish. Here’s some flowers from the Weigela shrub. The first one has a little bee inside:

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The beautiful German Iris we planted last fall are starting to blossom:

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I enjoy iris buds, too:

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A different view of some of the ferns:

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And then the storm hit (wind and rain):

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As I was planting seeds this damselfly was flitting about, making it really hard to get a good photo – this was the best I could do:

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Weekly Dose of Beauty

Yesterday for Mother’s Day my Mum wanted to work outside in her gardens – no problem! Anything to be outside. I took photos of this week’s flowers in blossom from her gardens for you to enjoy this week. Well, some have been around, I just didn’t get to them last week. First up, Red Bloom Bergenia:

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Flowering Plum. This tree is outdoing itself in blossoming this year:

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Korean Spicebush viburnum. Let me tell you, if you want viburnum, this one smells absolutely wonderful:

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Creeping Phlox, I think it’s candystripe:

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One of the many beautiful Anenomes in blossom right now:

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Foam Flower:

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And last, but certainly not least, Bleeding Heart:

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I love bleeding heart, but I also love all of these plants. Which one is your favorite?

Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day Dear Mum! And Happy Mother’s Day to everyone else who is a mother, too! Every Mother deserves the nice things of the world given to them on a silver platter! And since my Mum loves roses, I give you a photo of my Mum’s roses from her garden a couple of years ago. Not only are these roses beautiful, they smell wonderful, too.

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I hope everyone enjoys their day! Hugs to everyone who is a Mother. And hugs to those of you who aren’t, too!

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